Sunglasses for Snow

rosie_snowboarding-750300If your outdoor adventuring is taking you to snow country, you may need different eyewear from what you use here in Northwest Arkansas.

Glare caused by snow is blinding on clear days and can make outdoor activities like skiing turn into a day of squinting. Sunglasses, however, can make even the most bright conditions bearable and keep you from feeling like you’ve spent a day getting fried in the sun.

When you buy sunglasses for snow, there are a few things to consider that aren’t normally a problem when selecting summer frames. Snow is essentially thousands of tiny mirrors that reflect the sun from every direction in a pretty erratic fashion. On snow, rays are coming from every direction, not just above you.

To prevent glare off the snow from making your eyes fatigued, look for styles of frames that wrap around and curve with the shape of your face, rather than stick out like wayfarer styles. Wayfarer styles, while maybe more trendy, don’t do much in the way of protecting your eyes from refracting light coming from below eye level or behind you.

Make sure that your lenses are polarized– that’s always good, but with snow it’s essential. Polarized lenses contain tiny lines that prevent light waves of certain lengths from passing through, essentially cutting away harsh light. If you’ve ever looked at water without polarized lenses, you probably couldn’t see past the reflection on the surface. With polarized lenses, you can see into the water. Polarized lenses work particularly well to reduce the glare off of snow.

The tint color of the lenses can also make a difference. In a snowy environment, you’ll be surrounded by mostly white. Choosing, say, orange tinted lenses, will give a warm glow to the white snow and might be easier on your eyes than staring at pure white light. Blue, orange, or grey lenses are traditionally the choice of professional skiers and snowboarders because they take the edge off the snow and make it easier to differentiate shapes in the snow by adding shadows.

The staff at Uncle Sam’s can help you select the best sunglasses for winter fun, even if you’re not on the snow. Come on in and try on some new shades!

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